MT: PSC weighing changes to PURPA implementation


Montana regulators are exploring certain PURPA issues, including avoided cost estimation methodologies, standard rate design (including contract length and technology-specific rates), and resource capacity values, and public comment is welcome through October 23. In particular, public comment is invited on whether there should be separate standard rates for small solar PV, hydroelectric and other types of eligible generators. Comments are due October 23.

In neighboring Idaho, regulators recently granted a request by that state’s three major electric utilities to reduce the length of negotiated PURPA contracts from 20 years to two years, having concluded that the longer contract length resulted in utilities — and, customers, by extension — paying “unreasonable” costs for renewable generation. Oregon is also reviewing PURPA implementation.

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